Unless you have been in a coma for the past decade, you definitely know who Taylor Swift is. The talented singer/songwriter sang her way into our hearts with her relatable country songs and innocent, curly hair. Her music and image have evolved since she became one of the biggest names on the planet. Young Taylor had dreams of being a music star, but it wasn’t all she expected when she got there.
When you are in the spotlight, people care way too much about your personal life, and Taylor is no stranger to the tabloids. Between her catchy songs, movie appearances, and countless awards, Swift is known for her share of drama. Between her girl squad, frenemies, and famous boyfriends, Taylor is always being talked about. Need I even need to mention the Taylor and Kanye fiasco?
Check out these facts you may not know about the incredibly talented Taylor Swift.
Law & Order: Cat Lady
Some folks are cat people, and others are dog people; Taylor Swift is definitely a cat person. She loves all cats, but like any cat mommy, she has a special place in her heart for her own furry babies: Olivia Benson and Meredith Grey.
Yes, you read that correctly. Taylor named her cats after Mariska Hargitay’s character, Olivia, from Law and Order: SVU, and Ellen Pompeo’s character, Meredith Grey, from Grey’s Anatomy. In 2015, the pop star invited her television idols, Hargitay and Pompeo, to appear in her award-winning music video for Bad Blood.
In 2019, Swift came out with her music video for the song ME! As we watched her dramatically speak French and dance around in pastel outfits, something even more magical happened behind the scenes: Taylor Swift fell in love.
No, it wasn’t with her handsome and talented collaborator, Brenden Urie of Panic! At the Disco. It was with another furball that Swift named Benjamin Button. Swift spoke about the sweet, white, and grey kitten, gushing, “He’s just the best boy. He’s the best little guy.”
Computer Repair Man?
At the beginning of Taylor Swift’s career, she often had a guitar when she hit the stage. She’s a natural on the instrument, but did you ever wonder who taught her to play? It was actually a computer repairman. When she was 12, he taught her to play three chords which inspired her to write her very first song, Lucky You.
According to Swift, Ronnie Kremer noticed a guitar in the corner of her room when he came to fix the computer. Kremer said the story was a little less poetic, and he was her guitar teacher first and her computer repairman a few months later. Either way, he gets credit for teaching Taylor Swift the basics of the guitar.
There’s No Place Like Homes
Ever since she left her childhood home in Reading, Pennsylvania, Swift has acquired houses from coast to coast. Most of Swift’s residences are down-to-earth, New England-chic with beachy exteriors and wood floors. When she was 14 years old, she moved to Nashville, Tennessee, where her family purchased two homes: a large brick estate and a modern penthouse condo downtown.
In 2011, Swift left Nashville and moved to Beverly Hills, California. She chose a four-bedroom Cape-Cod aesthetic for an ordinary $3.97 million! She also purchased homes in Barnstable, Massachusetts, and Westerly, Rhode Island. She finally settled down in New York, New York, in 2014.
Contrary to popular belief, singing runs in the Swift family, and Taylor has it in her DNA. Sure, maybe her parents aren’t singers, but she inherited her grandmother’s genes, a professional opera singer. It didn’t take long for pre-teen Taylor to start performing all over her town.
She sang at local events and sports games in Reading, Pennsylvania. By the time she was 12, Swift started guitar lessons and began writing her own songs. That would just be the beginning of her incredibly long and successful career. Before she knew it, Swift was selling out arenas.
Open Mic Night
After a wonderful performance at The Bluebird Café in Nashville, Swift got her first record deal. She signed a contract with Scott Borchetta from Big Machine Records. In 2006, she finally released her first single, Tim McGraw.
The song is a lovelorn, nostalgic ballad about young love. It reached the Top 10 in country charts, and it was a huge part of her breakthrough debut album and subsequent outstanding career. Swift’s music has evolved through the years, but her first self-titled album made her a country star.
Real Bad Blood
Swift’s relationship with Borchetta has become more complicated in recent years. In 2019, Scooter Braun bought Big Machine Records, and that’s when all the drama started. This essentially meant that Swift’s master recordings (original recordings) of her first six albums belong to Braun.
The singer took to Tumbler to explain the situation and told fans that losing her own back catalog felt like her “worst-case scenario.” After her 13-year deal with Big Machine ended, Swift signed with Republic Records and Universal Music Group. The terms obviously allow Taylor to own the masters of all her upcoming albums.
Passing as a Boy
So, here is a fun fact about the singer’s name. Her mom wanted to give her daughter a unisex name because she thought that if someone saw the name “Taylor” on a business card, they wouldn’t know if it was a boy or a girl. Swift also revealed in interviews that she is named after Scottish musician James Taylor.
After moving to the Big Apple, Swift wrote the song Welcome to New York. She bought a seven-bedroom penthouse that used to be owned by Peter Jackson, the Lord of the Rings’s director. The $20 million home features a cool, warehouse-loft aesthetic with exposed beams and brick.
If her musical career ever fizzles out, Swift has a future in social media strategy. The singing sensation has millions of followers on all her social media platforms, including Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. She loves to tweet promos of her new songs and tease snippets of her new music videos.
But her favorite thing to do is leave her fans cryptic clues about her upcoming projects. Swift calls these hints Easter Eggs, and fans love over-analyzing her work to figure out her hints. If you’re a Swifty, you know that every lyric and every image means something. It brings her closer to her fans and makes her songs that much more exciting!
So Many Easter Eggs
Swift has always found it fun to give her fans sneak peeks into her latest songs, but she dialed up on the hints and clues when she was promoting her 2019 album Lover. On the cover of Entertainment Weekly, Swift was featured in a denim jacket covered in pins. The singer explained that every pin referenced a secret about the album.
For example, fans figured out what the title of her album is in the video for ME! Lover is written on a neon sign in the background, which shows that everything the creative artist does has a hidden meaning. Of course, that’s just one of many instances.
Taylor Swift teamed up with Zayn Malik in 2017 for the song, I Don’t Wanna Live Forever, for the soundtrack of Fifty Shades Darker. The song was recorded after Swift’s very public feud with Kim Kardashian, and the video launched a new era for the pop icon’s sound and image. Don’t worry, more on the Kardashian Feud later.
In the months leading up to Swift’s sixth studio album, Reputation, the singer transformed from a bubbly and innocent girl to a dark, sexy, and vengeful woman. Her music videos reflected that brooding time in her life, and she kind of stepped out of the public eye with that album. She barely did any interviews during that time.
Taylor’s Dark Days
“Imma let you finish, but Beyonce had one of the best videos of all time”: Anyone who wasn’t living under a rock in 2009 remembers these iconic words that sparked an epic celebrity feud. 19-year-old Taylor Swift won Best Female Video for her song You Belong with Me at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards. As she went on stage to accept her award, Kanye West famously interrupted, took the microphone, and proclaimed that Beyonce should have won.
On The View, Swift explained what was going through her head: “Wow, I can’t believe I won, this is awesome, don’t trip and fall, I’m gonna get to thank the fans, this is so cool. Oh, Kanye West is here. Cool haircut. What are you doing there?’ And then, ‘Ouch.’ And then, ‘I guess I’m not gonna get to thank the fans.’”
I Made That Witch Famous
By 2015, Taylor and Kanye had cleared the air. Six years after that epic interruption, Swift presented Kanye with the Video Vanguard Award, which confirmed their new friendship. Swift even volunteered to be his running mate when Kanye announced his plans of running for president.
Just when the two singers seemed to have buried the hatchet, Kanye released the song Famous which included a lyric that said he and Taylor “might still have sex” because he “made that bi*ch famous.” Swift commented about the line, suggesting that everyone will always want to take credit for her success.
Kim Gets Involved
In August 2016, Kanye’s wife, Kim Kardashian West, released footage of Kanye and Taylor’s phone conversation where they discuss the song. In the clip, the singer says she is okay with the lyrics “Me and Taylor might still have sex.” When she responded to Kim’s video, Taylor explained that she was upset about being called a name that rhymes with witch, and that’s what she didn’t approve of.
Unfortunately, the damage was done and the public did not agree. She was attacked in the media and was called a snake and a liar. Many people believe it was a manipulative publicity stunt and that she used the situation as a ploy for sympathy.
However, that wasn’t the end of their feud. If 2020 wasn’t bad enough, things got worse for the Kardashians while looking up for Taylor. The hashtag #Taylorwastellingthetruth began trending after the full phone conversation between Taylor and Kanye came out.
The source who leaked the footage remains unclear, but that phone call was very telling. It proved that not only did Kanye not tell Swift he planned to refer to her as a “bi*ch” in his lyric, but Swift specifically said she doesn’t want him to call her any bad words. It looked like Kim forgot to include that part in the snippet she shared online with the world. Turns out, Taylor was telling the truth the whole time.
I Guess I’m a Snake
Usually, a star steps onto the scene and becomes the “It Girl” of the year. She graces magazine covers, get high praises, and is pretty much the talk of the town… until the novelty wears off and the backlash begins. When Kim released the infamous phone call video (which we now know was edited) Swift hit rock bottom.
The singer was flooded with comments calling her a snake, in words and in the form of emojis. She remained silent on her usually active social media platforms for months. While recording her album Reputation, she kind of disappeared, only to return in August 2017 with a mysterious clip of a slithering snake for ten minutes.
Mandatory Rebellious Phase
When an angry Swift was writing for her album Reputation, she made headlines for her dramatic behavior. She died her hair platinum blonde (an extreme hair change can be cathartic when you’re going through a rough time), and then left her long-term boyfriend, DJ Calvin Harris, for British actor, Tom Hiddleston.
Swift and Hiddleston went on a string of dates that the press considered sweet. But then, fans and gossip columnists wondered whether this relationship was staged. Two instances, in particular, received much scrutiny: Hiddleston wore a t-shirt that said “I [heart] T.S.” and Swift met the British actor’s mother after dating him for just a few months.
The fiery relationship fizzled out just as quickly as it started. Apparently, it was Swift who ended it and left Hiddleston heartbroken. In an emotional interview with GQ, he confessed to the reporter that he was seriously in love with Taylor and the relationship was not at all fake, although gossip sites suggested otherwise.
Swift on the other hand never made an official comment. But in her lyrics to Getaway Car, she chastises the British actor for even thinking they could last. Considering how quickly she leaped from Harris to Hiddleston, the pair would “never get far.”
How Tall is Taylor Swift?
We all know that Taylor Swift is a brilliant songwriter, talented singer, and was born with the good looks and stage presence to become a superstar. The 5’9 superstar certainly the whole package, but she has more than just her musical skills and natural talent. This girl is also clever and funny.
Taylor made history when she became the first-ever Saturday Night Live host to write her own monologue. She called it, My Monologue Song and included jokes about Kanye West, Joe Jonas and there was a surprise kiss from ex-boyfriend, Taylor Lautner.
Beauty and Brains
As an incredible songwriter, it is no surprise that Taylor Swift loves reading and writing poetry. As a youngster, she was particularly drawn to Dr. Seuss and Shel Silverstein. One of her favorite books is To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. That happens to be my favorite book as well.
On October 28, 2014, Swift spoke to children about the power and importance of reading and writing at Scholastic headquarters in New York. She revealed to the audience that when she was just 13 or 14 years old, she wrote a 400-page book about her life and her friends. That’s pretty impressive.
A Triple Threat
Not all singers can transition to film. They may have amazing stage presence while performing, but they just don’t have the acting chops to make it on the big screen. The jury is still out for Taylor though as her acting gigs have been quite limited so far.
She made appearances on CSI and New Girl and was featured in Hannah Montana: The Movie, Valentine’s Day, and The Giver. She was also a voice actress in The Lorax. In 2019, Swift made her mark while portraying Bombalurina in the movie adaptation of the musical Cats. Unfortunately, Cats was a box office failure and got a 2.8 out of 10 rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
Cats Was Bad
In Cats, Swift worked with director Tom Hooper, whom she has been a fan of for quite a while now. She had already auditioned for the part of Eponine in his previous film Les Misérables. Although the role ultimately went to Amanda Seyfried, Taylor Swift reportedly made it pretty far in the audition process.
Eddie Redmayne, who starred in the film and sang with Taylor, praised the star on her performance and called her performance “amazing” and “extraordinary.” Unfortunately, audiences didn’t agree. The movie couldn’t even cover its $95 million budget, bringing in just $75.5 million.
Myspace: Where Aspiring Musicians Go
Remember Myspace? Oh, the good old days. It seemed to have been the first social media platform and was deemed bad and dangerous for regular young teens to have a profile. However, it helped musicians develop a fanbase, and Taylor Swift had an account.
As always, Tay was ahead of the social media game. Apparently, Myspace was unheard of in the country music world at the time. No wonder she eventually became the first woman to receive the Country Music Association Pinnacle Award in 2013.
She’ll Write a Song About You
Taylor rose to fame by singing relatable songs about her past relationships, and she became known for kissing and telling. Her first celebrity suiter was Joe Jonas in 2008. Unfortunately, the relationship didn’t end on good terms when Jonas famously dumped Swift on a 27-second phone call (ouch)!
About a year later, Taylor and her new boyfriend Taylor Lautner made a cameo as an obnoxious couple in the movie Valentine’s Day. They broke up because Taylor was more serious than Lautner. Taylor Swift was the one who ended this relationship.
Is Age Just a Number?
Within the same month of her breakup with Lautner, the starlet fell for handsome, mesmerizing singer/songwriter John Mayer. The relationship between Taylor and the famous heartbreaker was never confirmed. However, Swift’s song Dear John kind of made it obvious, and fans have speculated it’s about Mayer.
The song had one scandalous lyric that says, “Don’t you think 19 is too young?” referencing the pair’s significant age gap. If they dated when Swift was 19, that would have made Mayer 30. Although age is but a number, I think it’s safe to say that 19-year-old Swift was much more innocent than the 30 -year-old player.
Flavors of the Week
After splitting up with Mayer, Swift dated a string of Hollywood men. She had a whirlwind romance with Jake Gyllenhaal between 2010 and 2011. Many fans believe that Gyllenhaal was the man who inspired what critics say is Swift’s best song, All Too Well.
In 2012, 22-year-old Taylor had a summer fling with 18-year-old Conor Kennedy. In this relationship, though, Swift was more serious than young Kennedy. In fact, she even bought a house near him. She ultimately sold the property when the couple called it quits.
Who is Taylor Swift Dating?
Is Joe Alwyn “The One?” In 2012, Swift dated charming ladies’ man Harry Styles, and their time together inspired her song Style. She then entered a long-term relationship with DJ Calvin Harris, and the couple dated for over a year before their ultimate break up. Almost immediately after, Swift made headlines when she moved on with Tom Hiddleston.
Then she settled down with young British actor Joe Alwyn, and at the time of this article, the pair are still happily together. Her song Delicate gives us a peek into the start of their relationship, when the singer recalled their date at a “dive bar on the east side” of New York City. Engagement rumors have been circulating since the release of Lover.
Since the very start of her career, Swift has received a significant amount of flack for writing songs about her ex-boyfriends. While many people feel like they can relate, the haters were sick of hearing about her love life. But Taylor spoke out about the trolls criticizing her.
In 2014, the singer said that it’s a little rich for the press to stay silent when male musicians like Bruno Mars and Adam Levine make careers out of singing about their exes, while she gets backlash for writing about her relationships. It’s a fair point, and Adam Levine literally had an album entitled “Songs About Jane” and nobody said a negative word.
Besties With Ed Sheeran
Taylor Swift is incredibly good friends with fellow singer and collaborator, Ed Sheeran. She told E!: “I lived for the moments where he would burst into my dressing room with a new song to play me.” That’s right, Taylor got to hear most of Sheeran’s songs way before the rest of us.
The pop star went on and gushed about how important it was to her that “he wanted me to hear his song first. I don’t think he ever knew how inspired I was by his drive and passion of constantly creating new art.” Their first song together was Everything has Changed from Swift’s 2012 album Red. The duo continues to work together.
Praised by the First Lady
Taylor Swift was presented with The Big Help Award by First Lady Michelle Obama in 2012. She won the award because of her dedication to helping others and inspiring fans to take action. She was honored with her award specifically to assist American tornado and flood survivors and her involvement with the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
The First Lady had wonderful things to say about Swift: “Someone who has rocketed to the top of the music industry but still keeps her feet on the ground,” and as “someone who has shattered every expectation of what a 22-year-old can accomplish.”
Taylor has been famously best friends with Selena Gomez ever since Selena’s Disney days. Apparently, the girls met backstage at a Jonas Brothers concert while Taylor was dating Joe, and Selena was dating Nick. Although their relationships with the Jonas Brothers fizzled out, Selena and Tay remain besties.
During an interview with People Magazine, Gomez explained how lucky she is to be so close to Taylor. She said that Swift is always there for her and is “one of the greatest people.” When Selena was going through a tough and very public breakup with Justin Bieber, Taylor baked her cookies and brought over a bunch of munchies.
The Famous Girl Squad
When it comes to Swift’s “ride or die,” Selena certainly secured that title. But Swift has other pals in the industry, and there was a time when the popstar cultivated a posse of enviable celebrity friends. Who can forget when all these famous faces appeared in her vengeful music video for Bad Blood?
Swift’s “girl squad” includes some stunning models, actresses, and singers such as Cara Delevingne, Martha Hunt, Karlie Kloss, Gigi Hadid, Selena Gomez, Lena Dunham, Lily Aldridge, Ellie Goulding, Zendaya, the HAIM sisters, and a few other. The crew seems to have dissembled by now, but there is no “bad blood” between any former squad members (as far as we know).
Disbanding the Group
As we mentioned, Swift is still close with many of the members who formed her “squad” back in the day, but the gang is not nearly as central to her life as it once was. In a more recent interview, Swift explained how “never being popular as a kid was always an insecurity for me,” suggesting that her enthusiasm to form a “girl squad” was a result of some deep-seated insecurity.
Some people liked that the group depicted “girl-power,” while others criticized Taylor for only surrounding herself with skinny and unattainably gorgeous people. The singer clarified that these days she prefers to have more low-key and steady friendships.
An Emo Heart
What you may not know about this innocent country star turned pop princess is truly a secret emo kid deep down. She loves Paramore, Panic! At the Disco, Korn, and more. This love for dark music extends into dystopian novels such as The Hunger Games.
The singer adores the novels so much that she was ecstatic to contribute two songs when the movies were coming out. Safe & Sound is a haunting lullaby that reminds us of Swift’s bluegrass roots. Eyes Open, on the other hand, is a pumped-up rock ballad. Both songs are outstanding, like all of Swift’s work.
No More Kaylor
Taylor Swift and Karlie Kloss were the best of friends between 2012 and 2017. The duo went on a road trip, took a bunch of Instagram photos, walked the Victoria Secret runway, and even appeared on the cover of Vogue together. But when Taylor’s reputation was going down in 2017, so did her friendship with Kloss.
Kloss commented that they’re still friends, and there is a selfie of the two from Taylor’s reputation tour in 2018. Still, it’s been reported that the pair aren’t nearly as close as they used to be. Swift didn’t show up to either of Kloss’s two weddings, and Kloss was recently spotted on vacation with Scooter Braun, one of Swift’s biggest music industry enemies.
A Lover, Not a Fighter
In her Lover album, Swift included an LGBTQ+ anthem. In the music video for You Need To Calm Down, the singer is surrounded by queer icons including the Fab Five, Ellen DeGeneres, and RuPaul Charles. But some people have speculated that Swift herself may actually be bisexual.
Many commentators believe that this would help explain her intense friendship with Kloss. Fans have also noticed that Swift’s hair in the video goes from pink to purple to blue: the colors of the bisexual pride flag. Of course, the singer hasn’t confirmed anything, and by looking at her dating history, this is most likely just a rumor.
Is Taylor Swift Gay?
For years, Taylor Swift took cues from country legend Dolly Parton and refused to comment when reporters asked about her political opinions. She believed that people want to hear singers sing and don’t really care who they’re voting for (she wasn’t wrong).
However, that all changed in 2018 when Swift advised her followers not to vote for a candidate who opposed gay marriage and equal pay for women. At the end of the video for You Need to Calm Down, Swift linked a petition imploring the Senate to support the Equality Act.
So Many Awards
As of January 2021, Swift has a total of 10 Grammy Awards and countless nominations. She is also the youngest person ever to win the Album of the Year award and the first woman to win Album of the Year more than once at the Grammy. Congrats, Taylor!
In 2012, Taylor Swift confessed to Rolling Stone that she has a memento from that infamous VMA incident in her Nashville home. The singer explained that over her fireplace, she has a picture of the moment Kanye took the stage with a caption that reads “Life is full of little interruptions.”
How Old is Taylor Swift?
Taylor Swift is known to bring surprise performances and famous faces up on stage during her outstanding tours. Taylor certainly knows how to put on a show, and thanks to her Hollywood circle of friends, she has the connections to bring extra special guests on stage with her.
When it came to Swift’s 1989 tour, it was a team effort. Various special guests joined Taylor on her huge stage, including Alessia Cara, Pitbull, Tove Lo, Ricky Martin, Ellie Goulding, Miranda Lambert, Nelly, Keith Urban, Leona Lewis, Steven Tyler, Alison Krauss, Mick Jagger, Wiz Khalifa, Dierks Bentley, Selena Gomez, Avril Lavigne, Lisa Kudrow, Justin Timberlake, Beck & St. Vincent, and John Legend. 1989 is also a reference to the year that she was born (making her 31 at the time this article is written – 2021)
The Anaconda Drama
In August 2015, the nominees for the MTV Music Video Awards for Video of the Year were announced. Taylor Swift was thrilled that her song Bad Blood was nominated. However, Nicki Manaj was less than impressed that her smash hit Anaconda wasn’t recognized.
Of course, not everyone will be nominated for everything all the time, but Minaj didn’t think it was fair. The rapper expressed her disappointment through Twitter where she argued that institutional racism has something to do with it, as well as beauty standards, and widespread ideas about thinness.
In Nicki’s Words
In Nicki’s words, “If your video celebrates women with very slim bodies, you will be nominated for vid of the year.” As we know, Taylor’s video for Bad Blood starred several Victoria Secret Angels and she took this to heart. She felt like Minaj was targeting her and “pit[ting] women against each other.”
The exchange between the two popular singers sparked a major debate over mainstream award shows, body size, and race. It had a happy ending, though. Swift apologized, and Minaj forgave her. The two then performed together at the VMAs. Girl Power!
Her Latest Man
Ever since 2017, Swift has been in a serious relationship with British stud Joe Alwyn. Their romance seems different from all of Taylor’s previous relationships. She was usually spotted out with her man or posted pictures on her boyfriend’s own social media platforms. But Taylor and Joe are notoriously private.
The couple has never walked a red carpet together or acknowledged their relationship on social media. We get to see Taylor praising Alwyn’s movies, but that’s pretty much it. Swift is also known for dating men older than her: Gyllenhaal, Hiddleston, Mayer. Joe is two years younger than her. Either way, they seem to be happy together and this is Taylor’s longest relationship to date.
The Track 5 Theory
Over the years, fans frequently gravitate towards the fifth song of each of her albums. They noticed that the fifth track tends to be more personal and reflective on each of her records: White Horse, Dear John, All Too Well, Delicate, and so on. Fans dubbed this “Track 5.”
According to Taylor, she didn’t even realize this until someone pointed it out to her. She then admitted that she did put “very personal, emotional, song[s] as Track 5,” on her albums without noticing. She decided to continue the tradition. Although everything with Taylor seems to be a strategic “easter egg,” this was not.
Lucky Number 13
If you are superstitious, you know that 13 is considered an unlucky number. But Swift disagrees. In fact, 13 is her lucky number. For starters, her Twitter account is @Taylorswift13, and if you have a good eye, you likely spotted the number 13 in her music videos such as Ready For It and You Need To Calm Down.
You might remember that early in her career, Taylor physically wrote the number 13 on her hand before a performance, kind of like a lucky charm! Fans also realized that her 2019 album Lover’s release date was released on August 23, which is numerically 8/23. If you add 8 + 2 + 3, you are left with lucky number 13.
She Got the Dollar She Deserves
Taylor Swift attended a meet-and-greet in Denver back in 2013. It started off as an ordinary day for Swift when things suddenly took a dark turn. Local radio host David Mueller had the nerve to grope the pop star. Swift took him to court where he attempted to counter-sue her for defamation asking for $3 million in damages. Swift famously requested just $1 for her own damages.
A jury ultimately declared that Mueller was guilty. When she discussed her experience in court, she reflected on “all the people that weren’t believed” and asked, “what turn my life would have taken if people hadn’t believed me.” The singer believes that “we have so, so, so much further to go” and is thankful to her fans “for being there for [her] during what was a really, really, horrible part of my life.”